Man (58) given life sentence for murdering friend of ex-lover

 

A 58-YEAR-OLD Co Kildare man was jailed for life at the Central Criminal Court after being convicted of the murder of a man he believed was having an affair with his ex-lover.

The jury took five hours to return a 10-2 majority verdict in the trial of John Lammon, a father of two, of Dooley's Terrace, Athy, Co Kildare. They found Lammon guilty of the murder of Mr Michael Doogue (57), single, from Kilcrow, Athy, in the Co Kildare town on May 24th, 1995.

They convicted him, by a unanimous decision, of unlawfully wounding Mrs Angela Kelly (52), a mother of five from Greenhills, Athy, and Lammon's former lover, on the same date.

Mrs Justice McGuinness imposed the mandatory sentence of life imprisonment on the murder count. She imposed a seven-year sentence on count two to run concurrently.

The five-day trial was told Mr Doogue died after he sustained 11 stab wounds in the course of an assault by Lammon. The State Pathologist, Dr John Harbison, said Mr Doogue received nine stab wounds to the face and body, including one wound which penetrated his lower lip and entered his mouth. Two other wounds were consistent with being defensive injuries.

Mrs Kelly said Lammon had stabbed her in the back as she ran away from him outside her home. She said Mr Doogue had pulled Lammon away from her and Lammon had said: "I'm going to kill you, you f. . . ing whore." She said she saw Lammon wrestling with Mr Doogue on the green nearby.

She said Lammon was jealous of her friendship with Mr Doogue and had accused her of having an affair. She denied this. She said she began a relationship with Lammon at Christmas 1976, after her marriage had broken down and she had returned to Athy. She said their relationship had broken up before the incident.

She described Lammon as a "very violent" man when drunk, and said he had come to her home on occasions and beaten her and her children. He could have "a kind heart", but drink spoiled everything for him, she said.

In interviews with gardai, Lammon said he had had a longstanding relationship with Mrs Kelly and they had two daughters after her marriage broke up.

He told gardai: "I do not know" why I did this to Michael Doogue and Angela as I still love Angela and my two children ... I am very sorry for what has happened be cause I am not that type of violent person. I would put it down to that I was very jealous of Michael Doogue.